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Floyd Collins

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greenmyeyes
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Floyd Collins#1
Posted: 2/22/08 at 11:09am
So, I am a student at NYU and I just worked on their production of Floyd Collins, which I had never heard of prior to my involvement. At first I was preoccupied by why somebody might have written a musical about a man getting trapped and dying in a cave, but after watching it 6 times I really grew fond of it and have become mildly addicted to the off-broadway recording from 96 when it was done at playwrights.

Has anybody else had any experiences with this show? I would really love to hear what others have to say about it because I think it is kind of a peculiar little gem...

also: our production was reviewed by broadwayworld.com:

Floyd Collins: How Glory Goes
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Pippin
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re: Floyd Collins#2
Posted: 2/22/08 at 11:12am
I have never seen it, but I Love, love, love the score!!

It's amazing to me how Guettal can sound completely different in all three of the works of his I've heard so far.

Dave Clemmons spoke about this show at the Broadway theatre project a few years back, a friend tells me. He said that even if you don't care for the show, if you are a in the field of performing musical theatre, you must listen to it at least once to hear how one should write for the theatre.
"I'm an American, Damnit!!! And if it's three things I don't believe in, it's quitting and math."
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greenmyeyes
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re: Floyd Collins#2
Posted: 2/22/08 at 11:19am
Yeah, the score is ridiculous...and so different from light in the piazza, etc. And I was also amazed at how flawlessly the cast, especially the actor playing floyd, was able to pull off the vocals. In this production, floyd was seated downstage center for pretty much the entire show covered by "cave debris" and still completely banged out those songs like it was nothing.

Check out this video of the two actors who played floyd and homer...it's pretty amazing
Daybreak - Floyd Collins at NYU
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re: Floyd Collins#3
Posted: 2/22/08 at 11:27am
there was a production at a small theatre here, and I really wanted to see it after having heard the score. Unfortunately, when I was scheduled to go, the actor playing Floyd had lost his voice and they cancelled. I never got to see it. I'd love to see the score staged, it sounds fascinating. Isn't there a movie based on the same incident?
just keep swimming along, don't rise to the....
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re: Floyd Collins#4
Posted: 2/22/08 at 11:41am
I saw a production by a small theater company in Minneapolis, and even though I had heard the cast recording I wasn't really moved until I saw it, and now I'm hooked. The Floyd and Homer were so good, and when they sang the The Riddle it gave me goosebumps. The beauty of The Dream and How Glory Goes got to me and I even shed a small tear. I love all the vocalizing in the score that sounds like the ghostly echoes of Floyd in the cave. Guettel is just so good.
Marie: Don't be in such a hurry about that pretty little chippy in Frisco. Tony: Eh, she's a no chip!
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re: Floyd Collins#5
Posted: 2/22/08 at 11:43am
that whole cave sequence with the yodels being echoed is mind-boggling.
"I'm an American, Damnit!!! And if it's three things I don't believe in, it's quitting and math."
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re: Floyd Collins#6
Posted: 2/22/08 at 1:38pm
Unfortunately I missed NYU's production, though I heard amazing things about it. But I saw the weekend-revival-only production that Playwrights Horizons did several years ago, when they first opened their new theatre on 42nd. It was absolutely one of the most astounding shows I've ever seen -- and that was with little to no staging, and half the cast carrying scripts in their hands! The score is just transcendant, and it's amazing how much they were able to convey with just a couple chairs and some rope.

~JJJ
Dear Ken, I'm in pieces. Why the cold shoulder? Love, Barbie
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re: Floyd Collins#7
Posted: 2/22/08 at 4:56pm
I saw a beautiful high school production (!!) of it a few years ago in New Orleans. It's one of my favorite scores, even though it may be a little more challenging to the average theatergoer...the payoff is worth it.
<---- You can see the crazy in her eyes. ;-)
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re: Floyd Collins#8
Posted: 2/22/08 at 7:18pm
See, I never found it really challenging at all. I told the whole story in another thread about 2 years ago (I'm too lazy to look it up at the moment), but the first time I put in the CD I was mesmerized by the opening ballad, and completely blown away by The Call. I unplugged my CD player, ran into the other room, and DEMANDED that everyone in my house listen to it with me right then and there. I still think the score is an incredible achievement, and while the book isn't on par with it (nor is the subject manner, in many ways), I would attend any production at any time to hear it performed live.
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re: Floyd Collins#9
Posted: 2/22/08 at 10:03pm
"How Glory Goes" has the most amazing ending EVER. It makes me cry without fail every time I hear it.
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re: Floyd Collins#10
Posted: 2/22/08 at 11:00pm
I saw the Playwright's Horizon production and was so unnerved by it I couldn't speak about it to anyone. It was the closest I've ever seen to a Samuel Beckett musical. It wasn't until I heard the CD and really mulled over the extraordinary score that I grew to love the show. Those songs, which manage to be fragile and strong at the same time; the way the strings and guitar are layered in the orchestration (like nothing I've ever heard), the fugue with Floyd singing against his own echoed voice--it really is the best (maybe the only) way this story could be told. The book loses its way in the second act, but it doesn't really matter by that time.
I ask in all honesty/What would life be?/Without a song and a dance, what are we?/So I say "Thank you for the music/For giving it to me."
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re: Floyd Collins#11
Posted: 9/13/20 at 2:53pm

Bumping this up after 12 years to make sure no one misses Will Blum's incredible video (shot in his own apartment)! of The Call/It Moves/Time to Go, complete with a cave made of cardboard boxes and shiny tape:

https://youtu.be/BKP-1vhU0B4

"This thread reads like a series of White House memos." — Mister Matt
Updated On: 9/13/20 at 02:53 PM
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re: Floyd Collins#12
Posted: 9/13/20 at 8:12pm

Thanks for sharing! As auditions for this hard-to-cast role go, this would nail it! Will Blum is a star waiting to happen. Was lucky enough to see him on for Alex Brightman in School Of Rock and he blew me away. 

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re: Floyd Collins#13
Posted: 9/13/20 at 10:09pm
Love to see LCT revive this at the Newhouse!!
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re: Floyd Collins#14
Posted: 9/14/20 at 4:59pm

Thanks for posting this. The video, along with this thread (which I know is old), proves that this musical can be stunning with great performances and not much else. Not to take away from how well made the video is overall!

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re: Floyd Collins#15
Posted: 9/14/20 at 8:14pm
I was surprised he did it in an NYC apartment! I had assumed he was quarantining elsewhere when I saw just how high he was able to build it.

I don't know the show very well, but I've heard a few songs from it in concert (coincidentally one sung by Will Blum with Nic Rouleau; they were in Mormon together at the time) and enjoy what I've heard. I should probably just sit down with the cast recording one day.
"This thread reads like a series of White House memos." — Mister Matt